Midseason Analysis: Damion Easley



  • long, loopy swing tends to generate high popups and occasional homers — but after some surprising early-season bombs, pitchers have been more careful on the inside part of the plate
  • on occasion, he’ll cut down his swing and poke basehits — however, he is not in the lineup to be a .250 singles hitter, as Willie Randolph looks to him for pop
  • though his P/PA is above-average, his long at-bats are mixed with too many short and one-pitch plate appearances — which often come in head-scratching situations (i.e., late in game, down four runs)
  • should handle the bat better than he does; cannot be counted on to sacrifice bunt nor hit-and-run
  • he WILL hit mistakes over the fence


  • average range, average arm
  • though not a terrible defender, would not be described as “surehanded”; there have been a few balls go bang off his iron glove
  • fairly good at going back on the ball (i.e., popups) — which suggests he should spend more time in outfield, rather than second base
  • fairly good at turning the double play

Second-half Outlook

Damion Easley was a big surprise early in the season, hitting a few dramatic homeruns to win ballgames in late innings. However, when pressed into everyday duty, his vulnerabilities became glaring. As a pinch-hitter and bench player, getting 2-3 starts a week, he can be very productive — and this was his intended purpose when signed over the winter. If Willie Randolph ever comes to his senses, and plays Easley as intended, he will be immensely more productive and valuable — sort of like a poor man’s Endy Chavez. Easley should be getting occasional starts — against lefties ONLY — at 2B, SS, 3B, and the OF, maybe twice a week, and serve as the number-one righthanded bat off the bench. If that’s his role, he’ll hit at least 25-30 points higher, and give Reyes, Wright, Valentin, and the outfielders much-needed rest — making those players more effective as well.

Joe Janish began MetsToday in 2005 to provide the unique perspective of a high-level player and coach -- he earned NCAA D-1 All-American honors as a catcher and coached several players who went on to play pro ball. As a result his posts often include mechanical evaluations, scout-like analysis, and opinions that go beyond the numbers. Follow Joe's baseball tips on Twitter at @onbaseball and at the On Baseball Google Plus page.